33| Neuropsychology 3.0 – A Conversation With Dr. Bob Bilder

Research has repeatedly demonstrated the benefits of neuropsychological evaluations to patients and their families.  However, there is great potential for advancement and improvement in the field.  For example, there is growing interest in improving the validity of neuropsychological tests in the assessment and prediction of complex medical conditions using biological, statistical, and informatic techniques.  We discuss these issues with Robert “Bob” Bilder, Ph.D., ABPP-CN, a leader in the conceptual and technical evolution of the field.  We also discuss the problem of inertia, ecological and physiological validity, item response theory, computerized neuropsychological testing, and the National Neuropsychology Network (NNN).

A pdf of the transcript for this episode is available here.

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Topics Covered (with time stamps)

Main Episode

  • The legacy of clinical neuropsychological tests (3:26)
  • The distinction between ecological and physiological validity (7:19)
  • Virtual reality to enhance ecological validity (11:27)
  • Pacing advancements in medical technologies (12:47)
  • Customizing neuropsychological assessment to address the referral question (15:22)
  • Item Response Theory (IRT) to enhance neuropsychological assessment (16:38)
  • Test linking and data alignment to harmonize neuropsychological data from international clinical populations (20:09)
  • Test linking and traditional neuropsychological tests (24:38)
  • Analysis of types of responding to enhance neuropsychological assessment (29:38)
  • Computerized vs. pen-and-paper testing (31:27)
  • Overcoming criticisms to computerized testing (32:14)
  • The future of clinical neuropsychology (37:20)
  • Resistance to transitioning to computerized testing (38:41)
  • National Neuropsychology Network: timeline and expectations for grant (43:51)
  • Bilder’s neuropsychological assessment techniques (48:00)
  • Cloud normative database development (51:02)
  • Common data elements: cognitive and background assessment (54:22) 

Bonus Questions

  • Bilder’s priority for improving neuropsychology as a field (58:35)
  • Advice for current trainees (59:23)
  • Advice for students who would like to pursue training in neuropsychology (1:01:29)
  • Accomplishments of the field of neuropsychology (1:03:35)

About Bob

Robert “Bob” Bilder, Ph.D., ABPP-CN, is currently professor-in-residence at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences.  He directs the Consortium for Neuropsychiatric Phenomics (CNP) and the Tennenbaum Center for the Biology of Creativity, is Co-Director of the NIMH-sponsored Center for Intervention Development and Applied Research focusing on translational research to enhance cognitive control, is Co-Director of a new NCRR-sponsored Integrative Phenotyping Center for UCLA, is the director of the Medical Psychology Assessment Center (MPAC) at UCLA, and is director of the UCLA-Semel Institute Postdoctoral Training Program in Neuropsychology.

Selected References

Bilder, R. M. (2011). Neuropsychology 3.0: Evidence-based science and practice. Journal of the international Neuropsychological Society17(1), 7-13.

Bilder, R. M., & Reise, S. P. (2019). Neuropsychological tests of the future: How do we get there from here? The Clinical Neuropsychologist33(2), 220-245.

Bilder, R. M., & Howe, A. G. (2013). Multilevel models from biology to psychology: Mission impossible? Journal of Abnormal Psychology122(3), 917.


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